The benefits of regular exercise have long been proven, from weight management and boosting energy to improving sleep and thwarting health conditions, exercise should be on everyone’s to do list.

From Oct. 1 to April 2013, civilian personnel are invited to participate in the U.S. Army Garrison Civilian Wellness and Civilian Fitness Pilot Program, which is supported by the U.S. Army Installation Management Command.

Under the program, personnel who have been approved by a supervisor will be allowed to perform physical training three times a week for an hour at a time, said Sandy Pickard, operations administrator with the Directorate of Plans, Training and Mobilization.  All physical training must be conducted on Fort Bragg and the program is open to all employees even those currently enrolled in the Army Wellness Program.

According to Pickard, those who are rejected for participation by a supervisor could be granted permission by Col. Jeffrey M. Sanborn, Fort Bragg Garrison commander, or must obtain medical clearance from a primary care physician.

Assessment data collected will include a person’s height, weight, blood pressure, resting heart rate, indication as a smoker or non-smoker and determination of an active or sedentary lifestyle, with the primary goal of the program being to improve health, wellness and resiliency.

“It’s a win-win for all,” Pickard said. “An individual who spends time working out in whatever form of exercise during this pilot program, it could only be good for both the civilian employee and for the U.S. Army.”

Forms of exercise could include walking, swimming and running, said Pickard, who has previously participated in the program and understands the benefits associated with regular exercise.

“I believe my health is a whole lot better. (The program) worked out very well for me. It’s an excellent program. The Army benefits, but the employee will benefit the most,” Pickard said.

Other forms of exercise may consist of limited weight training and strengthening routines geared towards improving physical, mental and spiritual performance.

The pilot program is a revamp of the of the old Army Wellness Program which now allows personnel the capability to work out during the last work hour of the day and for enrollment extensions of an additional 26 weeks, Pickard said.

Each directorate has its own wellness coordinator who should be sought for more information pertaining to the Garrison Civilian Wellness and Civilian Fitness Program.